As sports reporters, we analyze, speculate, report and occasionally make predictions. The predictions are usually based off of what we've seen and mostly meant to stir conversation. Over the course of the boys' basketball season, I made several bold predictions and a few of them didn't even come close to fruition. So, it's time to look back at a few and see where I went wrong. This should be humbling. My reaction is about the same as Coach Williams:
"Bermudian did earn the 400th win in program history on Tuesday, but number 401 could be a challenge."
In my defense, the Eagles were coming off of two less-than-impressive losses to Kennard-Dale and seemed to be struggling to replace 80 percent of their offense from the previous season. Number 401 actually wasn't much of a challenge for Tom Flaherty's squad. They reached 411 by the end of the season and finished 12-10 --- good enough for third place in Division III. My bad, Bermudian.
"Don’t look now but there could be a good team up there in Canner Country. Biglerville is off to a 4-0 start, good enough for first place in the division. the Canners could be a dark horse to contend in the division."
I knew this one would come up. I was sipping the Canner Kool-Aid early when they started 4-0. I received a few comments from critics saying that the fast start was only because of a weak schedule.
It took me a little while to hop off the bandwagon and I placed them in my "trending up" category in an early-season post. The Canners went on to win just three more games the rest of the season. You were right, critics.
"Grant Wierman, Erik Myers and Liam Flaherty have been stepping up more and more around Eli Brooks and Darin Gordon. If they keep gaining confidence and knocking down shots, the Rockets are going to give opposing coaches headaches all season."
This is one that I actually got right, so I'll pat myself on the back now. When the season started, most YAIAA hoops fans knew that Spring Grove had Darin Gordon and Eli Brooks, but not much else around them.
As the season progressed, their supporting cast stepped up big time and it was crucial in helping the Rockets qualify for districts for the first time in nearly 20 years. They each proved to be deadly from beyond the arc, leading several YAIAA coaches wondering how to defend the Rockets.
"But if it comes down to the wire for Gettysburg, it could be an uphill climb as the Warriors go on the road for six of their final eight games."
At that point, Gettysburg was treading water and a tough schedule loomed ahead of them. It seemed that a .500 season could be the end result. I was wrong. The Warriors have gone 12-3 since Christmas, and 6-2 during that final eight game stretch that I mentioned. They have five guys on the court who can handle the ball and at least four who can knock down a 3-pointer. It's a dangerous lineup and their offense started to click after the holidays. So no, it wasn't an 'uphill climb'. I was wrong.
"My upset pick of the tourney: If Spring Grove can get 20-25 points from guys not named Gordon or Brooks, then the Rockets knock Northeastern out of the bracket."
I wasn't all that impressed with Northeastern coming into the league tourney, and Spring Grove was playing well. I thought the Rockets would catch the Bobcats at the right time and pull off an upset if their offense stepped up. Well the supporting cast got exactly 20 points (the magical number I said could help them get the win) and the Rockets still lost, 56-47. Oops.
Feb. 5: "It’s rare that a team has to wait until February to get a statement win, but that’s what I think the Nighthawks do. They didn’t roll over against West York last season, and this season, I see them winning a close one."
I knew this one would come up too. I heard from the loyal West York faithful after I predicted Hanover to upset the Bulldogs in the league tourney. This wasn't a homer pick. I genuinely thought that Hanover matched up well with West York and that they would keep this one close. I was very wrong. They lost, 62-37. Maybe I provided bulletin board material?